…After following what happened in Mariupol (which in English means the ‘city of Mary’) just a year ago, I had decided to write a Stabat Mater inspired by those events. Now my composition will be performed here in Munich at the beginning of April…
I was touched by the mail from Mr. Lucio Mosè Benaglia; he is an Italian composer now living in Munich, Germany. His Stabat Mater for Mariupol was written in the spring of 2022 when the terrible images of the bombing of this city, unknown to him until then, were going around the world. He wanted to learn more about Mariupol and came across the short but significant history of the city which was founded in 1799 by a group of Greek merchants that gave it the name Mary’s City. Dedicated to the mother of Jesus, the city soon developed into a rich open city full of life and culture, a hub of different ethnic groups and religions that were able to coexist for decades making the city flourish.
Mr. Benaglia about his Stabat Mater in the program notes:
…Remembering this history and its name gave me the idea of setting the text of the Stabat Mater to music. The Stabat Mater is one of the most frequently set texts in the Christian tradition of all time and depicts the pain and suffering of the mother of Jesus under the cross. I have thought of grouping the twenty stanzas of the hymn in such a way as to produce fourteen pieces corresponding to the number of the Stations of Cross…
Mr. Benaglia was emotionally inspired and guided by the work and lives of two people to whom this work also has been dedicated. The first one is the German (but Ukrainian-born) writer Natasha Vodin, author of the beautiful book She Came from Mariupol, the reading of which introduced him to the city of Mariupol through the incredible story of her family told in the book. The other is the Lithuanian director Mantas Kvedaravičius, a documentary film maker. who made a film about Mariupol in 2016. Working on yet another Mariupol documentary, Mantas Kvedaravičius was killed on 30 March 2022 by Russian soldiers on April 2th, 2022 while trying to escape from Mariupol together with other citizens
The Stabat Mater for Mariupol will be premiered on April 2th, 8.00 pm in Bürgersaalkirche by Ukrainische Kammerphilharmonie, Max Vokal München (conducted by Gerald Häussler) and Chor Prokow München, (conducted by Wasil Zakopets). Tickets € 20,- available at the box office. Another performance will be organised on July 22th 2023, also in Munich
Thank you so much Mr. Benaglia for sharing the story of your Stabat Mater with us!